As a technology enthusiast and audiophile, I’m always on the lookout for the best audio experiences, and 2023 has brought some exciting alternatives to the Apple AirPods Pro. Here’s a detailed dive into the top contenders.
Marshall Minor III: The Style Icon
Marshall Minor III stands out as the best overall alternative. Known for its bold style and excellent audio quality, these earbuds bring a semi-open design akin to the AirPods. The IPX5 water resistance makes them perfect for outdoor activities. They offer 5 hours of battery life per charge and 25 hours with the case, which also supports wireless charging. One notable absence is the lack of voice assistant support, a minor trade-off for such stylish and high-quality earbuds.
Oddict Twig: Smart and Stylish
For those seeking Siri integration without compromising on style, the Oddict Twig earbuds are a prime choice. They boast a unique aluminum design, 12mm carbon drivers for superior sound, and IPX4 weatherproofing. The touch controls support both Siri and Google Assistant, but the battery life is a bit underwhelming at just three hours.
JBL Tune 225TWS: Bass Lovers’ Delight
If bass is your beat, JBL Tune 225TWS will not disappoint. They offer a snug fit and excellent Pure Bass Sound. The Google Fast Pair feature is a nice touch for Android users, but iOS users might feel left out. These earbuds lack ANC and have a battery life comparable to the 2nd generation AirPods.
Soundpeats Air3 Deluxe HS: Hi-Res Audio Heaven
For high-resolution audio fans, Soundpeats Air3 Deluxe HS is a standout with its LDAC hi-res audio codec support. The semi-open design delivers a spacious sound experience. However, its glossy case is prone to fingerprints, and battery life could be better.
Bose QuietComfort Earbuds II: The ANC Champion
Bose QuietComfort Earbuds II are the top pick for active noise cancellation. They offer a comfortable fit, outstanding noise cancellation, and excellent sound quality. Their CustomTune system optimizes sound and ANC based on ear shape. They lack wireless charging and Bluetooth multipoint, but their six-hour battery life is respectable.
Audio-Technica ATH-TWX9: Hi-Fi Sound Expert
Audio-Technica’s ATH-TWX9 is for those prioritizing sound quality. They support up to 24-bit/96kHz hi-res audio with aptX Adaptive content and have an excellent soundstage. Their active noise cancellation is top-notch, but the battery life is on the lower end, and they come at a premium price.
Sony WF-1000XM4: Unparalleled Sound Quality
The Sony WF-1000XM4 earbuds are known for their best-in-class sound quality. They also offer effective noise cancellation and a comfortable fit, making them a top choice for audiophiles.
Jabra Elite 7 Pro: The Customization King
Jabra Elite 7 Pro offers immense customization options, making it a highly adaptable alternative to the AirPods Pro. From sound settings to noise cancellation, these earbuds cater to a wide range of preferences.
1More Aero: Spatial Audio Specialists
1More Aero earbuds stand out for their spatial audio capabilities, providing an immersive sound experience.
|Stylish, Excellent Sound, IPX5, Wireless Charging
|5 hours + 25 hours (case)
|No Siri/voice assistant support
|Siri Support, Aluminum Design, IPX4, Wireless Charging
|Unique design, supports Google Assistant
|Pure Bass Sound, Snug Fitting, Google Fast Pair
|5 hours + 20 hours (case)
|No ANC or transparency mode
|Air3 Deluxe HS
|LDAC Hi-Res Audio Codec, EQ features
|5 hours (reduced with LDAC on)
|Excellent value for price
|QuietComfort Earbuds II
|Comfortable, Superior ANC, Good Sound Quality
|6 hours + 24 hours (case)
|CustomTune system for optimized sound
|Hi-Fi Sound, Effective ANC, UV Light
|6 hours + 18 hours (case)
|Best Sound Quality, Effective ANC
|Highly acclaimed sound quality
|Elite 7 Pro
|Customizable, Secure Fit
|Tailored listening experience
|Enhanced immersive sound experience
In conclusion, each of these alternatives brings something unique to the table. Whether you prioritize style, sound quality, or specific features like noise cancellation or voice assistant support, there’s an option that fits your needs. 2023 is indeed a great year for audiophiles looking beyond Apple’s offerings.